POTATO PANCAKES RECIPE: EASY LATKES

Nothing like the way our bubbies made latkes in the old country! These latkes are not loaded with potato starch, flour, baking powder or other non-essential ingredients. Jamie’s grandfather shared this recipe with her when she told him that she thought his were the crunchiest, lightest and most perfect potato latkes I’ve ever eaten.

 

POTATO PANCAKES RECIPE: EASY LATKES

Servings: 8 Servings

Ingredients

  • 4 medium Idaho potatoes
  • 6 tablespoon canola oil or olive oil
  • 3 eggs beaten
  • 2 tablespoon matzoh meal
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • Applesauce or sour cream: optional

Instructions

  • Prepare a large bowl filled with cold water.
  • Peel potatoes, and as you finish each, place in cold water to prevent browning.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Cut potatoes lengthwise into halves or quarters so they fit into food processor feed tube. Process potatoes using the blade that creates thin, shoestring-like strips and transfer to a large bowl.
  • Add eggs, matzoh meal, salt and pepper and mix well.
  • Drop 6 to 8 spoonfuls of mixture into hot oil. Using the back of a spoon, pat down each latke to flatten it. Put as many as you can in the skillet without crowding. Putting them too close together will make them soggy.
  • Fry 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden and crisp around the edges; repeat procedure until finished with all the batter.
  • Blot excess oil with paper towels.
  • Serve warm with applesauce or sour cream, if desired.
  • TIPS
  • Corn meal is a great substitute for matzoh meal and will also make your latkes nice and crispy.

Matzo Brei Anytime!

Matzo Brei Anytime!

Stephanie and I talked about Matzo Brei when it was Passover time but what I already knew was that Matzo Brei is great any time of year!

Matzo Brei Anytime!

Ingredients

  • For Basic Matzo Brei
  • 1-2 sheets of Matzo
  • 1 egg per sheet of Matzo
  • Pinch of Salt
  • For Sweet Matzo Brei
  • Butter or dairy-free alternative
  • Matzo and egg mixture see above
  • Cinnamon
  • Honey
  • Toppings: maple syrup powdered sugar, fresh fruit, chocolate chips, whipped cream, etc…
  • For Savory Matzo Brei
  • Butter/oil
  • Matzo and egg mixture see above
  • Salt and pepper
  • Optional add-ins: green onions cheese, spices, fresh herbs, etc…

Instructions

  • Take out however many sheets of matzo you might need. Stephanie typically use 2 sheets per person, but she likes to over-feed people.
  • Crumble up the matzo indiscriminately. You want some pretty large shards and some smaller pieces as well.
  • Run some extremely hot water in your faucet. Once it’s hot, drown the matzo for about 45 to 60 seconds, or until you feel it start to break down a bit. You don’t want it totally water-logged, but it should def be pretty soft.
  • Drain the matzo of all the liquid. Completely. Literally press down on the matzo to squeeze out any remaining water.
  • ) Mix in one egg per sheet of matzo, along with a few pinches of salt.
  • Now your paths diverge, and it’s time to get creative.
  • For Sweet Matzo Brei
  • Heat up a few tablespoons of butter in a large skillet. Pour in the matzo and egg mixture over medium-high heat with a few dashes of cinnamon and a few squirts of honey. You can either scramble it up like you would scrambled eggs, or you can flatten the mixture out in the pan and cook it up in one big frittata-like disc (as shown below). Once everything is nice and browned, plate it up and pour on your toppings of choice!
  • For Savory Matzo Brie
  • Thinly slice a medium-sized onion. Heat up a few tablespoons of butter in a large skillet with a little oil as well. (Pro tip: mixing butter with oil prevents the butter from burning at a high heat.) Add the onions to the skillet and cook them for about 10 minutes, or until the onions get super caramelized and brown. Feel free to add in some fresh garlic or any other veggies you are into as well. You can also add some spices like garlic powder, dried herbs, chili powder, really anything your little heart desires. Just make sure you add a few big pinches of salt and black pepper.
  • Pour in the matzo and egg mixture over medium-high heat, and scramble it up just like you are making eggs. I know it is counter-intuitive to making scrambled eggs, but you really do want some brown and crispy bits here. Once everything is nice and browned, you can add some cheese to melt in, if you are into that. Enjoy!
Sweet Blintzes

Sweet Blintzes

Liz Alpern and Jeffrey Yoskowitz from their book The Gefilte Manifesto.  [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:2]

Joan Nathan’s Shtritzlach, Blueberry Buns

Joan Nathan’s Shtritzlach, Blueberry Buns

This recipe comes from King Solomon’s Table: a Culinary Exploration of Jewish Cooking from Around the World, a cookbook by the James Beard Award-winning, much-loved cookbook author and authority Joan Nathan.

Shtritzlach, Blueberry Buns

Servings: 12 blueberry buns

Ingredients

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose unbleached flour divided, plus flour for kneading
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup sugar divided, plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature divided
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • 2 heaping tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries about
  • 2 tablespoons chopped candied ginger optional

Instructions

  • Mix 2 1/2 cups of flour, the salt, and 3/4 cup of sugar in a mixing bowl, add half the butter, mix well, and as Sarah’s grandmother did, make a well in the center. Mix the yeast with 1/4 cup of warm water and stir in. Add the 2 whole eggs and the sour cream, mixing well with a spoon. (You can also put everything in a standing mixer.) Then cover with plastic wrap and let sit for about 2 hours until the dough doubles in volume.
  • Using your fingers, blend the remaining 1/2 cup of flour and 1/4 cup of sugar with the remaining butter and set aside in a bowl.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Dust a baking board with flour and roll out the dough to a circle about 1/8 inch thick, adding more flour if the dough sticks. Cut into 12 three-inch rounds and press at least 12 blueberries into each round of dough and sprinkle with a little of the remaining tablespoons of sugar and the candied ginger if using. Then, cradling the filled circle of dough in one hand, use your second hand to carefully pinch it closed into a 3-by-5-inch oblong shape. Repeat with the remaining dough and blueberries. Put the buns on the baking sheets.
  • Brush the buns with the remaining egg yolk, pat the streusel – the flour-sugar-butter mixture – on top of the buns, and bake for about 25 minutes or until golden – don’t worry if some of the juices boil over. That is part of the buns’ charm. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Remembering Rice Pudding

the-big-schmear-raisinsThis is Ina Pinkney’s recipe. Ina opened Ina’s Kitchen in 1991, and it quickly became Chicago’s premier breakfast restaurant. She was also the chef/owner of INA’s restaurant and The Dessert Kitchen Ltd. catering company. She has appeared on the Food Network’s Sweet Dreams with Gale Gand and The Best Of program, as well as on CNN’s The Turnaround. She has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Details, the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, Gourmet, Midwest Living, as well as trade and in-flight magazines.

Rice Pudding

Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 3/4 Cup uncooked white rice short grain for creamier pudding
  • 2 Cups milk
  • 1/3 Cup white sugar
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 2/3 Cup raisins
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 Teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • In a medium saucepan, bring 1 1/2 cups water to boil.
  • Add rice and stir.
  • Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
  • In another saucepan, combine the cooked rice, with 1 1/2 cups milk, sugar and salt.
  • cook over medium heat until thick and creamy, 15-20minutes.
  • Stir in remaining 1/2 cup milk, beaten egg and raisins.
  • Cook 2 minutes more, stirring constantly.
  • Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla.
  • Serve warm.

Chef Laura Frankel’s Mujadara

Chef Laura Frankel’s Mujadara

Chef Laura Frankel’s Mujadara

The Lebanese classic dish gets a make-over as a vegan side with crispy shallots, garlic chips and sauteed Swiss Chard.

Mujadarah is one of the oldest recorded recipes, with versions being dated as early as 1200. Without meat, it was a medieval Arab dish commonly consumed by the poor, reputed to be a derivative of the “mess of pottage” Jacob used to buy Esau’s birthright. Typically served with meat, I modernized the ancient dish by making it an all-purpose side dish with a luscious topping of crispy shallots and garlic chips.

Chef Laura Frankel’s Mujadara

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time40 mins

Ingredients

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil don’t worry you will use the oil again to saute the chard!
  • 5 large shallots sliced very thinly
  • 6 large cloves garlic sliced thinly
  • 1 ½ cups basmati rice rinsed until water is clear and not cloudy
  • 1 cup brown lentils
  • Large pinch of crushed red pepper
  • 1 bunch Swiss Chard stems sliced thinly and leaves coarsely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

Instructions

  • Line 2 small plates with several layers of paper towels.
  • In a small saucepan or saute pan, cook shallots and evoo, over low heat, stirring frequently, until shallots are medium brown and crispy (patience is key here, this will take 20-30 minutes). Transfer shallots to lined plate and sprinkle with salt.
  • Add sliced garlic to the same pan and cook until chips are light brown. Transfer to plate. The garlic will crisp up as it cools.
  • Meanwhile, simmer rice, partially covered, in a saucepan with 2 ¾ cups of water. When the water level is even with the top of the rice, turn off the heat, cover and allow steam to finish the cooking.
  • Cook lentils in 2 cups of water, over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes until tender. Drain lentils.
  • In a large saute pan, coated with the oil used to cook shallots and garlic, add crushed red pepper and chard stems. Stir frequently for about 2 minutes until stems are tender. Add leaves and saute for just a minute. Add rice, lentils and stir to combine. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  • Transfer lentil mixture to platter. Top with shallots and garlic chips. Serve with fish, chicken, beef, lamb or favorite vegetable dish.